Fingerprint Doodle Art

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Mini Thor has been sick again and that means I’ve been trying to keep an active little munchkin occupied indoors. Luckily we have this amazing book called “The Big Book of Things to Do”. It has science experiments, crafts, magic tricks, etc. He loves picking something out of this book. Our latest endeavor was making “Fingerprint Doodles”

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It’s simple yet can be full of imagination.

You just need an ink pad, paper, and a pen!

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After the fingerprints dry let your little one add faces and designs to create their own little world!

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Mini Thor made some cool little people, flowers, bugs, and a helicopter out of his prints.

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It was wonderful watching him use his imagination!

We hope you give this a try!
-Kate

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Fluffy Bath Paint

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Mini Thor used to loooooove taking a bath and wanted to take several baths a day, but suddenly he refuses to take a bath! I don’t know what caused the change, but seriously, little boys NEED baths! They play in the mud and dig in the dirt, find bugs, and collect rocks…being a boy is messy business! I’ve had to come up with a few ways to bribe him to take a bath make bath time more fun! One of those fun things is Fluffy Paint!

These paints are super simple to make; they are just shaving cream + food coloring! A fellow momma to a sensory kid told me she tried this with her little boys (shout out to M.J.) and I just had to give it a whirl!
You can mix them up in an ice cube tray, muffin tin, or in our case the jello Jigglers mold from our “Monsteriffic Jellotastic Movie Night”, pretty anything with sections will do.

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Spray shaving cream into each section and add 1-2 drops of food coloring. Stir together the two ingredients and you’ve got fluffy bath paints!

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Mini Thor has a blast with these!

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They are fun for painting the tub walls…and also adding hair-dos to rubber duckies!

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Have some fluffy fun!
-Kate

P.S. Try some of our those bath time favs…
Like these bath paints
Or have a snow day in the tub!
Or maybe a glow bath like we have done many times. Just put glowsticks the bottom of the tub during a bubble bath!

Sidewalk Chalk Paint

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Mini Thor and I love to play outside! Kids need sunshine and fresh air! I try to come up with fun new things for us to try and I had seen SideWalk Chalk Paint on Pinterest like a million times so I whipped some up for us to play with. This paint is so simple to make and the best part is…it is washable!!!

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Here’s what you need..
– 1 Cup Corn Starch
– 1 Cup Warm Water
– Food Coloring (a few drops of each color you want to make)
– Containers (like muffin or cup cake baking containers, I used silicon baking cups)
– Paint Brushes (Basting Brushes work great for this!)
These are all things you probably have in your kitchen! This activity would be great for an impromptu afternoon in the sunshine!

The How-To:

Whisk together your corn starch and water in a small bowl.

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Pour some of the mixture into each of your containers and then add a few drops of food coloring to each one. Stir it up and that’s it, you’re ready to go paint!

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The colors will be dark when you first paint them onto the sidewalk but they dry in beautiful almost neon colors!

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We had so much fun with this! Mini Thor got to splatter paint all over without worrying about getting his clothes messy or getting paint everywhere. Its a beautiful thing when children get to play in absolute freedom! He had droplets all over his white shirt and it washed out no problem!

Give this fun activity a try and I bet you’ll see some smiles 🙂

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And all the excitement might just wear out your little one!

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-Kate

Painter’s Tape + Imagination

Mini Thor has been sick again…yes, again! He hates being stuck inside all day so this momma has to get creative. This time we put a roll of blue painters tape to some fun uses!

How about indoor hopscotch for those times when the Motrin is working and your sick kid suddenly has a burst of energy?

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Or our new favorite sick day activity… Making roads with the tape for cars to drive on.

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I made a tunnel and a garage using the empty box and Mini Thor helped me make the roads using the painters tape. He picked out some cars to drive around and we made some buildings out of Lego Duplo blocks!

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Wonderful Granmomma even got in on the fun when she stopped by with some food for us!

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She was pretty darn good at making voices for the Lego people. I’d post the video of he grandpa Lego voice but she’d kick my butt! Haha!

Mini Thor makes amazing houses!

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I wonder what else we could do with the painters tape?

-Kate

Pitas to Personal Pizzas!

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We all have those nights when we need supper to be something quick an easy. Top that with a side of picky kids and you have a recipe for difficulty. Never Fear, this momma has a solution. Simple, easy, and everyone gets to have it their way…Pita Personal Pizzas!
With just three ingredients + toppings these pizzas are so simple a toddler could make them.
You just need pita bread, pizza sauce, cheese, and your fav pizza toppings. We kept it simple with plain ol’ pepperoni.

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Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and start creating.

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Bake for 10 minutes and ta-da everyone has their own customized pizza!

Mini Thor approves!

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He loves making his own pizza. We usually have a picnic in the living room floor when we have these. He loves having picnics. 🙂

These pizzas are a great way for the whole family to make dinner together!

Added bonus, these are low cal pizzas! You can eat your whole pita pizza for under 300 calories if you leave off the pepperonis and add some veggies instead. With pepperonis you’re still only at about 350 calories!

Enjoy 🙂
-Kate

Monsterrific Jellotastic Movie Night

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Mini Thor loooooves the Disney Pixar Movie “Monsters, Inc.” With the new Monster University movie coming out this month there is Monsters stuff all over Walmart. He spotted a Jell-O juggler mold with the faces of a few characters right next to “berry scary” flavored jell-o, so of course we just couldn’t pass it up! There were a couple other jell-o uses that I’d been wanting to try as well, so I thought we’d just make a night of it. A Monsterrific Jellotastic Movie Night!

First we made Jello-Jigglers so they could sit for three hours in the fridge and be ready for dessert after supper.
This is the end result…

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They turned out awesome and Mini Thor loved them!

Next I fixed “Monster Snacks” for us to eat while we watch the movie. I made Jello Grapes and they were a hit! (There are many many posts out there with this idea so I’m not sure who actually came up with this genius snack.)
Here’s the how to..

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Mini Thor and Aunt PeyPey both loved them! They were gobbled up quickly and I had to make a second batch!

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(You may want to use a lighter colored jello if you are worried about messy fingers)

Next we made some “Jel-doh,” homemade play-do using jello mix! I’m kind of weird (which you may have guessed already) and I just can’t stand the smell that store bought play-doh leaves on your hands, yuck! so when I found a recipes for making this scented dough I just had to try it! If you have a little one who may be tempted to taste play-doh this dough might be a good trial before using other modeling clays with them.  If they eat this it won’t do any harm, although I can’t imagine it tasting very well. 

Here’s the how-to…

In a small saucepan combine the following:

– 1 cup flour
– 1/2 cup salt
– 1 Tbsp cooking oil
– 2 tsp cream of tartar
– 1 cup water
– 1 (3oz) package of Jello

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Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the dough becomes the consistency of mash potatoes.

Remove from pot and cool on a lightly flour surface.

When it has cooled enough, kneed the dough thoroughly.

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(Store in an air tight container when not in use.)

We put our Jel-do to use as soon as it was cool! We made it into MONSTERS!

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We used googly eyes (I love googly eyes!!!), pipe cleaners, and pompoms to make silly monsters!

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Mini Thor was occupied by this for like half and hour, which is a very long time for a two year old!

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I loved making jel-doh monsters with my little monster! We made many monster friends!

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We ended up watching Monsters, Inc. a couple times and we had lots of monster fun!!!
-Kate

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Survival Tips: Keeping a Sick Toddler Occupied

Mini Thor has been sick like a million billion times this winter/spring! He is currently battling another round of tonsillitis. He feels puny when his fever is up but once that children’s Motrin kicks in he will have a couple hours of energy, he wants to do stuff but he’s whiny and grumpy so normal play just isn’t in order. He wants to be busy but he doesn’t have the get-up-and-go for his usually activities, so this momma has to get creative.

We started the day with a bubble bath and Bath Paints!

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We use an empty egg carton to make our paints in. I fill half the spots and leave the other half so that Mini Thor can mix together his own color concoctions. He loves to mix the paints up!

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A basting brush makes a great paint brush for little hands!

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To make homemade bath paints you’ll need bubble bath/baby wash, cornstarch, and food coloring. Find my instructions here.

We also got in some motor skills practice by making a cut and paste project.

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Mini Thor cut up pieces of scrapbook paper and cut out pictures from magazines and glued them onto paper. This is a simple way to keep him occupied, he loves to cut paper and this is good practice.
He did some impressive cutting for someone who isn’t even three yet!

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He used colored glue sticks (made by Elmer’s Glue) to stick the pieces on. Who wouldn’t love orange glue?!

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We also made a mailbox out of a shoebox! We used the empty box from his Nike sandals and some Superman logo duct tape, simple as that!

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I lined up the tape and Mini Thor cut the pieces off for me. We covered the box and then I wrote “MAIL” on top.

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We wrote letters back and forth to each other. Every time he opened the “mailbox” he said “oh goodness there’s mail in here!!” in his silly dramatic voice! He is such a ham sometimes!

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It’s amazing the fun that can come from a box!

Speaking of simple fun..how about making a fort! We made a pretty awesome fort out of our loveseat!

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Look at the big smile a fort can bring to a sicky little boy’s face!

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When you are stuck in the house all day you have to use what you’ve got to keep the sicky baby occupied. Simple things can bring big smiles! I’m sure I’ll be whipping up some more activities as the day goes on, but for now that’s all I’ve got. I’m one tired momma after not sleeping last night and then keeping “Fuss Bucket McCranky Pants” busy all morning. (When he’s being a grumpy butt I call him that and he usually has to try really hard not to crack a smile). Man, am I looking forward to nap time! When you’ve got a sick munchkin, I always advise taking a nap then they do. You never know how little sleep you may get (or not get) in the coming nights so you might as well take advantage of nap time!

For more sick day ideas see my previous posts…
“Sick Day Fun”
“Sick Day (again)”

I hope these simple ideas can make your sick days a little easier!

-Kate

Comic Books, Dinos, and Wookie Cookies!

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Yesterday was a seriously fun day!!!

We started off with Free Comic Book Day!

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Mini Thor, dressed in his Thor gear of course, and mommy with a Marvel shirt on. Even though we arrived at the comic shop just half an hour after they opened they were already buzzing with adults and kids (mostly adults teehee) checking out the latest comics and picking out their free comic book! Mini Thor’s cuteness brought many smiles and “awww”s. He picked out a few comics and got two free comics! Once he had picked out what he wanted he was ready to go read them!

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After comic book day we met Granmomma and PeyPey for brunch 🙂

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Then it was off to “Discover the Dinosaurs!”

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Mini Thor loved looking at all the dinosaurs and he really enjoyed digging for dinosaur bones. Now he has decided he wants to be a paleontologist like Dino Dan when he grows up (and also a rock star and an astronaut).
My little sister’s dinosaur impressions kept us laughing through the exhibit!

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After all this fun a nap was in order!

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Then it was off to Granmomma’s house to celebrate Star Wars Day, with lightsabers made out if pool noodles and the ingredients to make wookie cookies!

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We used my grandmother’s recipe for oatmeal macaroons to make our Wookie Cookies!

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I substituted 2 sticks of butter in place of the Crisco and I used walnuts instead of pecans because that is what I had on hand.

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You cream the butter, sugars, vanilla, and baking soda, then add the eggs until its all mixed. Next add flour.

Now put that mixer away and get out a big ol spoon. Mix in the oats, coconut, nuts, and mini chocolate chips.

Now make them into little balls and use regular size chocolate chips to make your wookie face!

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Some of the faces turned out cute when they baked and some of them not so much but they were all taaaaasty!

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Not the wookiest if cookies but Mini Thor loved making them..and eating them!

We absolutely loved our Saturday of celebrating and exploring! Comic book shopping, Dino observing, Lightsaber battles, and Star Wars cookie making! I love doing fun stuff with my Mini Thor!

-Kate

“Tie-Dye” Sun catchers

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We really really really (I mean super duper really!) don’t like rainy, gloomy weather! Being stuck inside sure does put a damper on the day sometimes. Mini Thor loves to play outside and this February weather we are having here at the end of April has made for a little man with cabin fever! But have no fear, mommy is here!!! Mommy to the rescue, with craft supplies in hand! You know, I think I need a cape!

For our rainy day project we made sun catchers! Might as well think about the sunny days, right?! If you have kids there’s a good chance you also have a collection of broken crayons. My “little mister particular pants” does not like to use them once they are broken, because well, they are broken. I have a whole bucket of sad, unwanted crayon parts in the art closet that have been just waiting for their time to shine!

To make theses super cool suncatchers you will need..
– Wax Paper
– Crayon Shavings
– Iron & Ironing Board
– Towel
– Scissors
– Yarn or string for hanging

The how to…

Make shavings from your old crayons

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Mini Thor dug through the bucket and picked out which colors we should use and peeled the paper off. Then, I made the shavings using scissors.

Get out your ironing board and place a towel or cloth on top that you don’t mind some wax being melted on (this is a possibility so it’s better safe than sorry).
Put a sheet of wax paper down and the it’s time to add the crayon shavings!

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Mini Thor added lots of colorful “sprinkles”

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Now it’s time to heat up the iron. I put mine on the heat setting for cotton.
Add another sheet of wax paper on top.
Use the iron to heat the wax paper and crayon shavings! This is cool to watch (as long as your little one understands that the iron and suncatchers are hot and not to touch).
The two pieces of wax paper will melt together sealing the rainbow swirls of magic inside!

(No wax transfer was left on the iron, but if you are worried, you can place a towel over the suncatchers before ironing.)

You will have the coolest window art on the block now!

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I cut one suncatchers into a simple circle and the other into a butterfly shape, per Mini Thor’s request haha.

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To hang them, just poke a hole in the top somewhere and thread some string through. Ta-da!

I can’t wait to see how awesome they look in the window on a sunny day!

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[I didn’t come up with his fabulous idea on my own, I was inspired by a post I saw on Facebook by “The PLAY Group,” a page that is a collaboration of several websites that offer activity ideas for little ones. The post gave a link to the wonderful website Two Daloo. There I found a post about making butterfly suncatchers which inspired the activity you saw here today.]

We will probably be making some more of these in the near future! They would make a cool gift for a grandparent too!

We hope you find some fun even on the rainy days
-Kate

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Color Run!

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When I was a teenager, I lived in the Evansville area so when I heard there was going to be a Color Run there I just had to make the trip back home and do it! My mom, sis, and a family friend registered too! Seriously I was pumped. The run took places yesterday and I just have to share a few photos with you. Mini Thor is just so darn cute covered in colorful paint powder!

He was excited as soon as he got up yesterday morning! “Color Run! Color Run!”

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We loaded up and headed to Franklin Street at an early 7:00am! And by early, I mean early for everyone else on a Saturday. Mini Thor gets up at 6am every morning so it was no biggie to us.

We arrived and got our color packets! At the start of the run, everyone threw their packet into the air.

Mini Thor (and the stroller) ended up with a good amount if paint on them even before we got moving!

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This is Granmomma and PeyPey after the precoloring at the beginning 🙂

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And them with our friend (who might as well be family) Dawn!

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At the first few points of color being thrown I would ask him if he wanted to be covered up or just put his sunglasses on. He ended up loving it! I was worried with his sensory issues that this would all be too much, but nope, he did fabulously!

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After riding in the stroller for the first loop he was ready to get out and join in the color throwing and fun for the second loop!

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It was a blast! This was an excellent sensory experience! Lots of sounds and colors to experience!

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We were covered in color!

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Check out my little sister!

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We seriously went out to brunch like this! (Me, Mini Thor, PeyPey, and Granmomma)

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What a wonderful adventure!!!

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(The event was put on by The Franklin Street Event Association)

-Kate

Update: If you are wondering about the powder, it washed out if the provided race shirts easily but a couple spots did stain Mini Thor’s white shirt that I had purchased at Walmart for him to wear for the run. Our shoes dusted off easily and it washed off if our skin with no problem. If you are going to participate in one of these fabulous fun runs make sure you bring towels to lay down in your car for after the race. Granmomma’s car seats ended up with some color on them haha. It seemed to dust right off though. Overall, it was totally worth the mess.
(Update made on 4/22/13)